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May 14, 2009

Why I don't like the rose guy in Fells Point

roseyroses.JPGYou know that guy who strolls around Fells Point with a basket full of roses? He pops in and out of bars up and down Broadway and Thames Street on Friday and Saturday nights. I call him Flower Dude.

I don't like Flower Dude. It's nothing personal. But I don't like Flower Dude.

You see, Flower Dude never says anything. He just waltzes up to your table or barstool and silently stares at you. He doesn't ask you if you want to buy a rose. He doesn't have to.

Heck, I'll bet if he actually asked, I'd feel more comfortable saying "no, thanks."

But oh no.

Flower Dude just comes up and stares at you for a second and puts us guys on the spot in front of our friend/girlfriend/wife ...

This is so unfair. I'm a good husband. I buy flowers and plenty of presents. But suddenly, up comes Flower Dude, and just because I don't want to buy one of his roses right then and there, I feel like a terrible husband -- even if I've gotten Amie flowers earlier that day.

This, dear readers, is why I don't like Flower Dude. 

From what I've heard, Flower Dude has been guilting boyfriends/husbands into buying roses for their sweethearts for years now. He might even make a living off of it!

Since there is nothing I can do to stop Flower Dude (except avoid Fells Point), I thought I would share my frustrations with you, gang. Does anybody else feel the same way? Or am I alone in my opinion of Flower Dude?

(Sun archive photo)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 11:08 AM | | Comments (33)
Categories: Bars & Clubs


We used to kick him out of the bars that I ran in Fell's, but at least one of those now allows him in.
Hey bar owners/managers, if you won't let the cub scouts in selling their candy bars, how is this any different?

"From what I've heard, Flower Dude has been guilting boyfriends/husbands into buying roses for their sweethearts for years now. He might even make a living off of it!"

Um... yeah? He sells roses at bars, right? That's how they make a living out of it. Guilt. The whole game is a graft, from selling roses at bars, to selling diamonds, to selling weddings. Surprise surprise....

I think flower guy has brothers all over the city. I have run into a flower guy in Fells Point, Pasadena, Cockeysville, Ellicott City and several other places. They are everywhere!!!!

I forgot to mention that about a year ago I was at a friends bachelor party at a strip club and flower guy walked in trying to sell roses. I sure as heck wasn't buying my friend a rose. Who did he think was going to buy roses? The guys are already giving their money away and where would I put a rose if I bought one for a dancer? Hmmm!

BC- Brings up a good point. Most establishments would not allow just any ol' person off the street to pedal their wares. Why does Flower Dude get so much leeway, here and other cities too?

SS I agree with your post too, there is a guilt factor involved with the whole presentation.

If you are dining al-fresco and he is simply selling on the sidewalk that seems within the bounds of acceptable.

Ooh, I hate the Flower Guy! He basically puts dudes on the spot about looking cheap in front of their dates. I wouldn't want to lug a rose anyhow (I like to travel light when I'm out), and it's not even a romantic or thoughtful gesture since he didn't think of it himself. It's sexist and old-fashioned to assume that a woman would be bowled over by a guy buying her a trinket mid-date. I like getting fresh flowers, but I do not like Flower Guy.

I wonder how Flower Guys operate in Mt. Vernon or other neighborhoods with a visible gay community. When approaching a same-sex couple, which one do you target?

Aye. I wait for the day when Flower Dude is Pushing Daisies.

One time many moons ago, I was sitting in the Daily Grind on Thames drinking tea, reading my newspaper, minding my own business. Next thing I know, 3 or 4 of the flower guys are arguing in their native tongue (Lebanese maybe ??). They start punching each other, roses and coffee cups are flying through the air over my head. I didn't know whether to duck or laugh. Eventually the Grind had to call in the cops to break it up.

Needless to say, I don't like flower dude either.

Flower Dude used to just walk around saying "Rrroseees, rrroseeees" and now every time I see him I say "Rrroseeeees, rrroseeeees" - I think he likes it.

I admit it. I have purchased a rose from the guy. I didn't feel pressured and my lady loved it. The bar owners may have the right to prohibit rose guys. But, I would prefer the bar owners and bartenders stop serving the patrons who are very clearly beyond their drink capacity and show them the door. And, I've never seen a rose guy drunk, fighting or vomitting in Fells' Point.

"I'm a good husband."
It's been about a week Sam, give Amie some time.

If it helps he used to guilt all the women in gallaghers also. and i know i've been guilted by him out in fells and have bought flowers before. he's not just hitting up the guys. Though i can't speak for straight women though, so not sure if he guilts them at all, but he definitely comes over to the gay ones.

i know flower dude, and he's actually a pretty nice guy. also, his roses really are exceptionally beautiful if you look at them. my boyfriend (a fells point bartender) always buys a couple from him when he comes by because they're so nice...but i guess that is neither here nor there.

i agree that it's kind of annoying how he goes up to patrons in bars. but he is nowhere near as irritating as the Balloon Dude. you know who i am talking about.

I'm a good husband

For how many days now? 8>)

Eff you, Sam Sessa!

I hope they don't let Flower Dude into The Hill.

Flower Dude will get into the Hill.

Flower Dude is unstoppable.

Flower Dude,

On the street, in bars and here,

Thank you for being rude.

hmmmm...a guy selling roses in a bunch or bars full of horny guys and a bunch of hotties...I am sure Flower Dude has helped more than a few guys hookup with these babes


The people that come into tanning and nail salons with milk crates selling crap are annoying too! I don't need anymore pasta pots and I don't need children's books!

He is a nice guy, and anon, if you bf is a bartender in Fell's he never bought a couple of roses from "flower dude." He will gladly fork over a couple of stems for the privilege of plying his wares on you premises. If you don't want a rose, just move on.

I'm a good husband.

Oh, for goodness sake, Sam! Your marriage is measured in days! You don't get to say this until it's at least measured in months!


HAHAHA! Owned!

oh yea, hey Sam.


Pay no attention to these naysayers; I'm sure you are a good husband. Just remember, it's not the number of presents or flowers you give, but the devotion, affection and attention that you shower on your beloved which will keep your marriage strong for many years to come.

" If you don't want a rose, just move on."

Generally you are sitting at a table or standing in line for something when you are approached by such vendors, so you can't just "move on." It's another element of the on-the-spot approach that rubs people the wrong way. No one likes feeling cornered.

It's a minor annoyance at worst, but it IS annoying if you're trying to enjoy dinner or a drink and someone's hawking you stuff.

"You see, Flower Dude never says anything. He just waltzes up to your table or barstool and silently stares at you. He doesn't ask you if you want to buy a rose. He doesn't have to."

This intrusive and rude, it would really be out of line to tell him to piss off, if you're beyond the charitable "Thank you but no".

The sarcastic would be "take a picture it last longer, take a hike"

I haven't seen that bloke in years.

Of course, it helps a lot that I usually don't go to Fells Point on weekends OR with my wife OR past 7 or 8 PM.

Lol... I'm safe, my wife hates roses ;-)
So she kicks him out by herself!

I couldn't agree with you more. The only time - ONLY time - that guy is of any use is when you secretly seek him out, and then surprise your mom/GF/Wife with your purchase. Without the element of surprise on your side, he is relying on relationship blackmail to make the sale. If I owned a bar or restaurant, that guy would be in the paddy wagon if he ever crossed the threshold of my place to silently harass the folks that were actually paying *the restaurant*. I'm not sure why he gets a free pass; you don't see other quasimerchants shuffling about in any of these establishments. The Rose Guy is running neck-and-neck with the bail-bonds-pen-to-sign-your-check garbage.

Back in the day when I lived in Fells I'd see that dude all the time. I used to chase that dude down Thames St. yelling, "coochie, coochie, coo!!" trying to tickle his armpit. He never tried to sell me roses after that. My buddies all yell "coochie, coochie, coo!" at him when we see him now and he usually will spin around real fast to see who it's coming from. Apparently he does not like being tickled.

Not a big fan of flower guy, though I always feel guilty for not buying, but in Europe those guys are everywhere. They seem to have free reign in bars and restaurants and sometimes sell trinkets as well as flowers. I've encountered much more aggressive salesmen than the FP flower guy.

Perhaps Flower Dude is developmentally disabled?

Flower guy smells really bad sometimes. I've never heard him speak but a friend of mine says the guy can speak several languages...

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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